All not well with Aarogya Setu?

New Delhi: Amid concerns over data security, the Union government has clarified that the Aarogya Setu app is completely safe and developed in most transparent manner.

The clarification from the Centre came after some activists and organisations had raised doubts about the use of the app since it was launched in absence of personal data protection law and alleged that it could lead to surveillance of masses by the government.

“The Aarogya Setu app was developed in a record time of around 21 days, to respond to the exigencies of the Pandemic with Lockdown restrictions only for the objective of building a Made in India Contact Tracing App with the best of Indian minds from Industry, Academia and Government, working round the clock to build a robust, scalable and secure app,” said the government.

The clarification came after it emerged earlier on Wednesday that the government had been served notice by the Central Information Commission for what it called ‘evasive answers’ on who created the contact tracing app that the government pushed as an essential tool in the fight against the coronavirus.

According to Aarogya Setu app, it was developed by the National Informatics Centre and the Information Technology Ministry but according to the Central Information Commission, various ministries and departments had given ‘evasive answers’ to a Right to Information (RTI) query on who created the Aarogya Setu app.

“Denial of information by authorities cannot be accepted,” the top RTI body said in its notice, calling it ‘extremely preposterous’.

The notice questioned why the government should not face action for ‘prima facie obstruction of information’ and giving an ‘evasive reply’.

The CIC had asked the NIC to explain why it does not have any information about the creation of the app while the website mentions that the platform was designed, developed and hosted by the NIC.

 

NT Bureau